Nigerian victims of Shell oil pollution are a step closer to ...

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Nigerian victims of Shell oil pollution are a step closer to justice

Things aren’t going well for the oil giant after it is forced to abandon a bid to stop trial being heard in a UK court

Todd Gillespie and Laura Hurst

Royal Dutch Shell has abandoned its final attempt to argue that a major lawsuit brought by thousands of Nigerians over an oil spill in the West African country should be heard in Nigeria rather than the UK.

Shell’s legal team declined to return to England’s high court, arguing that the five-year-old case would be better heard in the African country, according to the parties in the case, conceding that the Nigerian subsidiary will now be joined to claims made in England against the parent company.

The UK supreme court said in a landmark ruling in February that Shell’s parent company could be sued in English courts for the actions of its Nigerian subsidiary. The court, however, left the door open for Shell to argue that it was more appropriate to leave any action against the local unit to Nigerian courts. By including the subsidiary in the UK proceedings, more documents about Shell’s work in Nigeria are likely to be made public...

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